Smith & Daughters pair to open vegan deli in Fitzroy

Deli delight: Mo Wyse and Shannon Martinez at the Fitzroy site where they will open Smith & Deli.
Deli delight: Mo Wyse and Shannon Martinez at the Fitzroy site where they will open Smith & Deli. Photo: Luis Ascui

Smith & Daughters have an enviable problem. The Latin oh-by-the-way-vegan restaurant is too busy to do lunch and dinner.

"We would have to remake everything between lunch and dinner service." says co-owner Mo Wyse. "We have enough people, we have enough time, but not enough coolroom space."

The solution is Smith & Deli, a Jewish American-style deli that's about to open on Moor Street, Fitzroy, around the corner from the restaurant.

The focus of Smith & Deli is fully prepped meals to-go: "It could be lasagne, pizza, soup or pasta – whatever we have on that day." Wyse says. There'll be made-up bagels, lunchboxes (with a sandwich, salad, piece of fruit, pastry and a drink) and coffee.

A daytime deli format allows co-owner and chef, Shannon Martinez, to flex her flair for creating plant-based dishes that aren't gluten or soy-heavy, in cuisines other than Smith & Daughters' Spanish-influenced food. "It opens things up for Shannon," Wyse says. "She's not vegan, and she looks at things scientifically. She'll say, 'Now, here's a sincere task: vegan smoked salmon'." Martinez makes it from watermelon. Now, that's thinking outside the lox.

Takeaway-only Smith & Deli is due to open at 111 Moor Street, Fitzroy at the end of April.